Interview with Tarusha Mittal from Koonk Technologies
Tarusha – I have done my schooling from La Martiniere Girls’ College and post that, I have pursued CS through ICSI. I have been working since the age of 18,actually, right after I got out of school- I published a local lifestyle magazine MishMash. Post that, Mohit Madan and I incorporated Koonk- An IT firm and have since worked on some moderately successful to failed startups before starting off with the Data Center business. We built a green DC in New Delhi while being bootstrapped and ran it successfully. It broke even within 6 months of operations. We have since then moved to Cloud- our latest offering is Cloudrino. I am an SLP Fellow-Batch 2015-16.
Tarusha – From the very beginning, I have been very clear that I wanted create and build for myself rather than being in a job, where there is a limited scope of growth and no offense to people who have jobs but I would rather be building something that is my own and with my own vision than be helping someone build their dream. So, I have been ambitious from the very start and that became even more evident when I got into publishing right after school. Entrepreneurship can be the highest paying job but there is a struggle involved but I can say this with confidence now, considering we have been bootstrapped for 5 years and have just started raising funds that the allure was not money, it was about creating something that is driven by passion.
YEF – What inspired you to start your own businesses?
Tarusha – I will quote Chuck Palahniuk here- The idea is to build something that will outlive you. So, that is what we intend to do. I never really looked at any other vocation since I have actually started thinking about my career, it was always writer on the side and an entrepreneur. You have to be strong enough to pursue your dreams- be what they may.
YEF – What is your company into and what problem does it solve?
Tarusha – Koonk is primarily a Data Center solutions Company, we deal in SaaS, HaaS, Paas and IaaS. We have been in the Data Center business for nearly 3 years, now. We want to make technology less intimidating and more accessible, all the while holding onto our tag, Innovation we see, we spread. Cloudrino is our latest cloud based offering, it is a cloud infrastructure platform.
YEF – Tell us more about your brand name?
Tarusha – Koonk is derived from the voice of the Koel bird. Cloudrino is fairly straight forward- Cloud services with a slight twist.
YEF – How did the idea for your company come about?
Tarusha – We were building a tech based startup so, it was more of necessity to give it legal recognition. It was a hyper delivery platform in Dehradun. Mohit Madan is my Co-Founder and Mr. Ajeet Khurana is mentoring us.
YEF – What are key services you are providing which are differentiator from the rest?
Tarusha – We are trying to make technology accessible to people by making Cloud less intimidating, we are adding a GUI layer for 3rd party server management. Apart from that, we have one click software solutions at the helm too. We have an API, are green and are app enabled.
YEF – What is the pricing strategy and marketing strategy you have been using?
Tarusha – Our economics is steady- our pricing is the most competitive in the market but we are not compromising on quality at all. It is all about how we have learnt from our experience of being in the Data Center business and we do not consider ourselves as conventional Data Center builders. We are doing this differently and that is what makes us stand out. Our growth has been organic but we do intend to utilize, online- SEO/SMO and content marketing, offline and affiliate marketing. They are being put into place, as we speak.
YEF – How’s the business going on and who are your key clients?
Tarusha – We are proudly hosting the largest cyber security platform of the country. We have more than 25K people who have signed up since we opened for our public beta 60 days ago.
YEF – Your current target regions and future plans?
Tarusha – We intend to keep the number of our user base increasing and we intend to add another node in the next quarter, as well. Our current target is Startups, SMEs and Developers.
YEF – What do you think are the most important factors that will make your company a success?
Tarusha – We are different and brave for embarking on something that seems daunting. We are going to be a success via the amalgamation of a good team, patience and some amazing mentors.
YEF – Who are your role models?
Tarusha – Richard Branson, Gloria Steinem- there are so many that we can take inspiration from, those were the ones that were at the top of my head. I truly believe that most of the people who we come across, teach us something or the other.
YEF – What words of advice would you give to other young entrepreneurs?
Tarusha – Persevere. Be brave enough to launch, get feedback and either persevere or pivot. Do not give up that easily and it is going to be really hard unless you are miraculously lucky, so be as hard as nails.
YEF – What do you think about this initiative of Young Entreprennovators Forum?
Tarusha – I think that it is a great initiative; you seem to have the right mix of investors, mentors and startups, on board. This should really help entrepreneurs in getting the right kind of help, advice and recognition.